TYRONE: Mickey Harte’s men out to upset holders Dublin

Tyrone's Mickey Harte. Pic by INPHO.
Tyrone's Mickey Harte. Pic by INPHO.

It’s all systems go for this Sunday’s eagerly-awaited All Ireland senior football final between holders Dublin and Tyrone.

Dublin are overwhelming favourites, with Tyrone priced at 11/2 to cause an upset and win the Sam Maguire Cup for the fourth time - and a first since exactly a decade ago.

Anything can happen in a final and while Mickey Harte’s charges go in as underdogs, he is sure to have his side well-prepared for battle in front of what will be a packed house of 82,000.

The Dubs are going for four in a row and many already believe that they will become the first side to win five in a row. And in many ways that sort of talk suits Tyrone.

When the Red Hands crashed out of the Ulster Championship at the first hurdle against Monaghan in May few would have given them much chance of reaching the showpiece in the GAA calendar but they have regrouped through the qualifiers as well as the inaugural Super 8s and they are in the decider strictly on merit.

They could have been gone in their first qualifier game when it took a last-gasp Cathal McShane point to force extra time in Navan against Meath but they never looked back after that.Wins followed against Carlow, Cork and Cavan to ensure their place in the Super 8s, were they began with a facile win over Roscommon.

Dublin beat them by three points in Healy Park but the way that Tyrone finished that game certainly gave them cause for optimism.

A first Championship win in Ballybofey since 1973 set up an All Ireland semi-final with Monaghan, where they gained revenge with a narrow victory.

Dublin on the other hand have swept all before them and, after winning all three of their Super 8 games, they eased past Galway last day out.

They are certainly a superb side with Jim Gavin at the helm, a man who has lost only one Championship game since being appointed manager (v Donegal 2014).

He is going for his fourth Sam Maguire as manager and has never lost in a final.

Harte, though, is also going for a fourth success at this level and has also never lost a final.

It has all the ingredients of an intriguing battle and no doubt Tyrone will give it their all despite the odds being stacked against them.